ruminations about architecture and design

Sunday, June 4, 2017

sailing for the horizon

Long suffering readers may note the inconsistent treatment of modern architecture on this blog. Although the overall tone is negative, grudging respect is accorded to some of the big names of the movement: Mies, Wright, Saarinen, Ben Thompson....all managed to produce memorable works. The harm they did with individual buildings in the service of their art is not the real issue. They inspired generations of less talented designers and brainwashed thousands of institutional clients. The mediocrity and hypocrisy that distinguishes so much of the practice of those educated in the tradition is discouraging. Now, preservationists are adding second rate design efforts to their list of protected buildings--the most egregious examples include anything by Paul Rudolph and most buildings in the greater Boston region. Ultimately, the indifference of the general public and the unchecked greed of developers may remove most of these insults from the landscape. Even if the replacements are banal, they won't be dripping with bombastic ideology and near complete lack of function.

Towers of ilium is seeking a marketing consultant to expand the reach of this blog. Inquiries can be slipped under the office door along with cash donations. It will be a competitive interview process.

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